Windows Crash Gallery page 4 by David Joffe

"Focus: 'But there are bugs in any version which people would really like to have fixed.'

Gates: 'No! There are no significant bugs in our released software that any significant number of users want fixed. ... Maybe you're not using it properly.'"

- Focus Magazine, 10/23/95



2002-12-13 Excel XP on WinXP: I tried to print a one-page Excel document and got this error. I tried again and then it was fine. "Choose less data"?


2002-12-02 Visual Studio 6 SP5 on WinXP crash. This program crashes on me about once or twice a month. It doesnt look like Microsoft is planning on releasing another service pack, even though there are obviously still bugs.


2002-11-18 WinXP: I got this useless (i.e. uninformative) error message while trying to install the DirectX SDK (Software Development Kit) on a machine at work.


2002-09-22 WinXP: These tooltips are a bit shy, it seems. Sometimes they work properly, other times they dont pop up at all even when you want them to, and other times, like this, they are trying to hide.. Shouldnt something so basic and fundamental actually, like, work?


2002-09-21 Visual SourceSafe 6 SP5: When trying to show File Differences on a file from within a recursive Project Differences, SourceSafe sometimes gets confused about which directories the files are in, if the two directory structures are slightly different. When you select to show File Differences, it incorrectly adds a superfluous directory into the path (in this case "obj_both".) (This is definitely a bug, as it does correctly determine file differences within the "Project Differences" itself.)


2002-09-01 WinXP: Microsoft Developer Studio crash.


2002-08-01 WinXP: ".. and what?" I got this weird abbreviated message when trying to view Help/About in an old 16-bit version of Windows Calculator running on XP (which, granted, I probably should not have been doing anyway :)


2002-06-16 MS Access XP: A plain vanilla MS Access crash.


2002-06-13 Win2K SP2: Note the "restore size" of this folder in the recycle bin. Huh??


2002-06-04 MS Word XP: This happened sometimes while trying to save a particular document "as a web page", other times it worked (it was a somewhat large document - the resultant HTML file was about 16 MB). The suggestions are completely ridiculous (everything was taking place on my C drive, which has no errors), but the program, for its part, is at least trying to provide me with some suggestions as to what went wrong.


2002-05-28 Not Microsoft; SurfStats (a web site log analyzer) gave me this odd error message one day: Hmm .. was I supposed to specify an error?


2002-04-23 Win2K SP2: Hmm .. the recycle bin sure looks empty, but a right-click / "empty recycle bin" reveals some mysterious invisible items.


20 Aug 2001 This happens somewhat often to me in Visual Studio. It happens if I attempt to save (Ctrl+S) within a second or so of making a change to the file Im working on (I save often and habitually when working, often as soon as I make a change). (Visual Studio 6 SP5 on Win2K SP2)

8 September 2002 Addendum: Parish writes: There is, however, a much more serious bug that appears to be related to this. Sometimes (many times) when I use F5 etc. immediately after editing I get *lots* of errors about undeclared variables, functions, memebers etc. The cause is always the fact that a source file has *been deleted* from the project directory. It is *always* a .h file and, AFAICT, is the corresponding .h file to the .cpp file I just edited (e.g. foo.h if I was editing foo.cpp). The missing file is not in the Recycle Bin and if it was open in VC then the window has closed (so I cant just re-save it). This is a *very* serious bug. A colleague of mine at work also encountered this bug, and it seems to be Windows XP related.

3 January 2003 Addendum 2: This has happened to me now, twice in the last month. A .cpp file I was working on disappeared, and I lost about two hours of work. I think its time to explore alternate C++ development environments ..


2002-04-13: Microsoft recently began a "we have the way out" advertising campaign to diss UNIX. As it turned out, they were running the campaigns web page on a BSD (basically UNIX) box! After getting some bad publicity when this was discovered, they tried to move the site to Win2K, and for the next two days the site was mostly down, during which I took this screenshot. Interestingly, on a side note, the whitepapers on the webpage were put up in PDF format, a non-Microsoft document format created by Adobe, essentially in competition with MS Word as a document distribution format! :)


2002-03-30: Microsoft Visual Studio 6 SP5: This product seems to have trouble opening files from Windows Explorer that have brackets in the filename (but only, it seems, when Visual Studio is already open). All other filenames seem to work OK, just filenames with brackets (both square and round) do not. There is no error message, no feedback whatsoever. Just *nothing* happens.


2002-03-26 Win2K SP2: ipconfig error. Restarting the computer "fixed" this problem (or at least, not *fixed* it, just made it seem to go away: restarting the computer is symptomatic treatment, it doesnt actually fix whatever actually caused a problem)


2002-03-25: Not a Microsoft error. Symantec pcAnywhere popped up this extremely minimalist error dialog when it had trouble connecting to the server. (The unusual look of the dialog is because I had a similar-to-Apple-Aqua XP skin installed.)


24 Sep 2001 Hotmail gave this error, which is fine except for the fact that I definitely had Javascript enabled! (Hotmail, accessed with IE 5.5 with Javascript enabled)


25 Jul 2001 I was playing back a quick macro, repeatedly (something I often do, it was the only time I ever saw this). (Visual Studio 6 SP5 on Win2K SP2)


3 Sep 2001 I was just playing back a quick macro. I had to restart Visual Studio before quick macros would work again. Its the only time Ive ever seen this though, and its a feature I use often. (Visual Studio 6 SP4 on Win2K SP1)


28 Aug 2001 Wordpad was open in the background; when I closed Internet Explorer, Wordpad crashed! (Win98SE)


20 Aug 2001 Active Desktop needs to be instructed to "recover" .. (WinME)


2 Aug 2001 "Unknown" is not accessible .. hmm .. (Win2K SP1)


June 2001 Microsoft Word 2000 crashed. Not unusual in itself, but when I took a screenshot and tried to paste the screenshot into Paintbrush I got this error :) (Win2K SP1)


June 2001 Developer studio (version 6 SP4) crashing when I try to compile, had to delete all project temporary files. (Win2K SP1)


Start button looks a little sick .. (Win98SE)


+/- 1999

NOTE: The remaining screenshots on this page were taken around 1998 and 1999, but I never got around to adding them to the web page until around April 2002, so my memory of the details is occasionally a little fuzzy. I found these screenshots on an ooold backup CD of mine.

My first Visual Basic experience :) ... I decided to try Visual Basic just for interest; within the first five minutes it crashed.


+/- 1999 Win95 through to Win98(?): Not sure when/if they eventually fixed these, but for at least the first three years after Win95 was released, there was a whole slew of problems when working with very long (but valid) filenames (by "long" I mean filenames close to the maximum number of characters you can have in a filename). These four screenshots constitute about half of the very-long-filename problem screenshots I encountered during purposeful testing (some of which were specific to working with the command prompt, I havent included any of those). If you still have an older version of Windows, you should be able to duplicate these problems.

This first amusing, somewhat confused error message I got when trying to create a long named subdirectory in another long named directory.


+/- 1999 This error I got when trying to rename a short named file to a long named file, within a long named subdirectory.


+/- 1999 I cant remember precisely how I got this error; I think I tried to move a long named file from a short named subdirectory (c:\bbb) to another short named subdirectory within it (c:\bbb\ccc).


+/- 1999 This strange error I got when trying to open a long named text file in a long named directory within another long named directory (if I remember correctly).


+/- 1999 Note the large area to the bottom right; the Visual C edit window is a little confused about the size it should be :)


+/- 1999 Im sure other people will also fondly remember this one: Win98 used to sometimes get all of the icons on the taskbar mixed up :) That icon most definitely is not the "Show Desktop" icon, its the "VR Line Inspect" icon.